Change is the one thing in the world that is both constant and always good. It may be change for the better or for the worse, but in either case, change is a good thing.
How could that possibly be? Because the alternative to change is always stagnation, complacency and inevitably a confused understanding of how the world works. Without change to remind us, we can come to believe that nothing can ever get better or that, somehow, we have the right to what we have because of the natural order of things. Feelings of arrogance and superiority or a sense of crushing despair overwhelms our senses and makes it impossible both to progress or to hold on, or even recognize, to what is really valuable. Change is nothing to fear.
Change is always a challenge. But it is only challenges that propel us to new opportunities, to new discoveries about ourselves and the world.
I am, in part, reacting to the miraculous (some say) transformation of the province of Alberta from the bastion of conservativism to being governed by a center left party (albeit a rather moderate version of said party). Of course, those who have been watching closely have seen this coming for a long time, in changing demographics and in the rise of modern and progressive politicians at the municipal level. Yet, most people denied that it was really happening and even today with the evidence staring them in the face, many are struggling to find a way to say that nothing really changed.
Sorry, mate, it did.
But, of course that is merely one small corner of the world. Change is occurring at many levels and at many places. Climate change – another thing some people still want to deny – is unquestionably wreaking havoc on many environments and eco-systems. There is much that is bad in climate change – but even there one can find a silver lining. People like me, who seldom thought of their relationship to the land and water that surrounds us, have grown thoughtful. Some of us have grown angry. And while you might not worry about seeing me angry, when I’m linked to thousands or millions or billions of like-mind, we may just become a formidable agent of… what is it?… change. Climate change driving political and economic change – just so we can hold on to what is really valuable.
Because that’s how it happens. Change always starts small – that first tumbling snowflake that becomes an avalanche – but it seldom stops there. And what comes after? That’s the interesting part.
I’ve changed my mind and my life more often than some people have changed their shirt. Sometimes, I think I’d just like to stop, to settle down and live within the status quo. But then something exciting happens and I change again.
But that’s ten minutes.